updated 8/3/2007 8:17:35 AM ET 2007-08-03T12:17:35

Consumer products maker Procter & Gamble Co. said Friday its fiscal fourth-quarter profit rose 19 percent on sales growth and improved margins.

The company behind brands like Gillette razors and Tide detergent also confirmed its earnings-per-share guidance for fiscal 2008 and said its board authorized the repurchase of $24 billion to $30 billion in stock over the next three years.

Net income for the quarter ended June 30 rose to $2.27 billion, or 67 cents per share, from $1.9 billion, or 55 cents per share, a year earlier.

Sales rose 8 percent to $19.27 billion from $17.84 billion, led by double-digit increases in blades and razors, fabric and home care, and health care. Sales from businesses it has owned for more than a year rose 5 percent, while foreign exchange contributed 3 percent to sales growth.

On average, analysts surveyed by Thomson Financial forecast a quarterly profit of 66 cents per share on sales of $19.11 billion.

Procter & Gamble, which also makes products such as Pampers diapers and Pringles chips, said its integration of the Gillette business is moving ahead of schedule.

Copyright 2007 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.


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